Rite of Passage Parenting: Letter to lovers, part 2
(Check out last week’s column if you missed Part 1.)
Dear Daniel and Ashley,
You both understand that love’s foundation must be based upon the person of God and the biblical principle that says you will choose to bring out the best in the one you love without expecting anything in return. Now, we are ready for the next subject. Ashley, this letter is for Daniel, but you may listen in.
Daniel, if you think you understand Ashley, you are naive. Only one man—Jesus—has ever truly understood women. No man before or since He walked this Earth can say the same thing.
Your job is not to understand, but to love (Ephesians 5:25). Learning to love your mate is a wonderful, lifelong, exciting process, if done according to God’s Holy Word. In case you haven’t noticed, God wired women differently than men. It took me a while to figure this out, but it is a man’s responsibility to build love into his life mate.
Building a house requires a set order. The contractor lays the foundation first, then the walls and finally, the roof. You would never want to buy a house from someone who built the walls first and then tried to pour the foundation underneath.
In the same way, the building-up of your life mate also has an order. Daniel, when you speak to Ashley, look into her eyes. She needs to know she is the focus of your attention. This helps her receive your words.
Second, use her name. Names are important to God. In Ezekiel 48:35, He calls himself Jehovah-Shammah, “The Lord who is Present.” In Exodus 15:26, He refers to himself as Jehovah-Rapha, “The Lord our Healer.” Names are also important to your soul mate. If you are like every other couple I know, you will come up with personal names for one another. That, my young friend, is a God-like activity.
Do the next three steps in order. When you want to build love into your mate, you must first touch her mind. Proverbs 31:10-31 contains a list of qualities that speak to a woman’s mind. She needs to know she has worth and value, and you must validate that in Ashley.
This passage mentions qualities such as trustworthiness, industry, preparedness, skillfulness, kindness, thoughtfulness, responsibility and more. When you tell Ashley, “I admire you because you are considerate of others’ needs,” you are speaking to her mind.
Second, you need to speak to her heart. You do that by complimenting her body. Song of Solomon will teach you how to do that (although sometimes it gets a little weird. I wouldn’t suggest telling Ashley her neck is like the Tower of David).
Most women look into the mirror and tell you what is wrong with their appearance. When Ashley looks into your eyes, she needs to see herself as . . . beautiful. You haven’t met my wife yet, but she is the most beautiful woman in the world. I have reminded her of that for the past 35 years. And do you know what she needs tomorrow? She needs me to remind her one more time.
Most men don’t know how to speak beauty into their wives. If you say, “Your hair looks nice,” most women will reply, “I didn’t have time to do anything with it.”
Try the magic word “because” when you speak to your mate. “I love the way you wear your hair because it frames your face and brings out the beauty of your eyes.” Which do you think Ashley would like best, the first comment or the second?
Third and last, you will touch her body. Touch only works as a woman’s love receptor after you first touch her mind and heart. Hold her hand when you pray before meals. Touch her on the arm or face when you speak beauty into her. Marriage grants you the freedom to experience the full expression of touch.
Let me tie all this together. Most men get this process backwards and want to touch the flesh or tell their wives they’re beautiful without first touching the mind.
A wife is like a flower. The better care you give her, the more she blooms. Speaking to her mind opens her to receive your love. Speaking to her heart prepares her to receive your touch. And when you do touch her, the right preparation allows you to experience the fullness of her love.
Ashley, we will talk next week about more ways the enemy has thrown confusion into the male-female relationship. I am praying for you both. I don’t want the enemy to rob you and Daniel of what God intended as the most magnificent experience this side of Heaven: true love between a man and a woman.
Walker Moore is president of AweStar Ministries in Tulsa, P.O. Box 470265, Tulsa 74147, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, phone 800/AWESTAR (293-7827.